And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly . . . into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent. -Revelation 12:14
A few months ago we found out that we would have to move (our landlords wanted to sell their house). The question on our minds was: should we stay in the neighborhood? Many things about staying made sense. The kids wouldn’t have to change schools. We had lots of friends and support there. We loved our ward family. The thought of leaving that ward and those friends we had loved for the past eight years was heart-breaking. But we looked both near and far, trying to stay open.
Several months before I knew how much change and upheaval was coming with an impending unexpected pregnancy and an unexpected move, I had a “vision” that brought me to tears. During my morning meditation, I saw myself giving birth, surrounded by women I love. As my baby boy emerged from my body, I pulled him to my chest and sobbed tears of relief, crying, “I did it! I got him here! He’s here!”
I had a sense during and after this glimpse that when I gave birth to that baby I would be living in Zion. Not necessarily Zion itself, but a preparatory Zion of sorts. I got the sense that the boy in my vision had a very specific place in mind for his pregnancy and birth to occur. Or that his birthplace had been determined by Divine design long before I even knew of his existence. At the time, I had no intention of getting pregnant any time soon, so I just looked forward to meeting my not-yet-born (though very much anticipated) son in the safety and comfort of a city of peace, perhaps two or three years down the road.
Everything shifted when I discovered I was pregnant in May. Where did this child want to be born? Where did God want to send us? Our search for a new home felt like so much more than just an ordinary search. And yet everywhere I found dead ends. Homes were too big, too small, too expensive, already under contract, etc. Part of me began to despair. We even looked at a house just a few streets away with an identical floor plan to the one we were living in. I wanted it to be “the one” so badly. But my husband and I both felt a strange emptiness as we walked through the home. After we left, I told him, “I feel like God is saying, ‘You could move here, and it would be fine, but it’s not your Zion.'” I had the overwhelming feeling that God had something so much better in store if we could trust and be patient.
On May 6, I had made a list in my journal of my ideal house… all the things I hoped our new home would have/be. It was partly just for fun but partly just to put it out there in case my house-hunting angels were listening. Among the items listed were:
On May 28 we found a home with everything on my list. Everything and more. But we weren’t the only ones interested. We looked at the house, it felt like home, we applied, we waited, we tried to stay neutral. Somehow I knew that we were going to be moving in a week whether or not we got that house. I packed like crazy, despite being in the throes of finishing yoga teacher training.
Four days later, it was official. We got the house! So many mixed emotions raged through me. I didn’t want to leave my friends or change schools. But God was handing me everything (everything) I had asked for on a platter. It had to be right.
A day or two later my husband was talking with the Elder’s quorum president from our new ward about helping us move in. Apparently this guy knew the husband of a friend of ours. My friend’s husband had taken the missionary discussions (several years prior) in the ward we were moving into. I texted my friend to let her know. She said: “I have heard him talk about that ward. He loved it there. He called it Zion.” Any doubts about whether we had found the right home dissolved when I saw those words. We were moving to Zion.
There is truly something special about this spot of earth. I feel so safe here. It’s a beautiful, peaceful place of refuge. An oasis of calm in the middle of a city of chaos.
And the desert shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose. It shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice. . . . And the ransomed of the Lord shall return, and come to Zion with songs and everlasting joy upon their heads: they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away. -Isaiah 35:1-2, 10